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Tidal’s New Lossless Tier Says Goodbye to MQA (but does it really?)

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dmac6419

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hmscott

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If the above article and link story proves true. Looks like @amirm was right about MQA going away and it took 2 days for news to break.
Actually, this was discussed on Tidal related Reddit / Facebook / ? groups 4+ days ago:

And, we Annual Subscribers get a "free" upgrade so we can continue listening to what we've already paid for ;)

Anyon else seen this yet? Tidal Hifi Plus : TIdaL (reddit.com)
Tidal Upgrade for Free - Thumbnail.jpg


MQA separated in Tidal HiFi Plus subscription : TIdaL (reddit.com)

The Facebook groups for Tidal are membership only to keep the trolls out :cool:

Here is Tidal AU's new Hifi Plus and Hifi Tier description, and the New Hifi and Hifi Plus optimization through a Support thread:

What Audio Quality Do TIDAL HiFi Plans Offer? – TIDAL
What Audio Quality Do TIDAL HiFi Plans Offer?

TIDAL HiFi memberships are the best way to experience music in the highest sound quality available. We have two TIDAL HiFi subscription options - HiFi and HiFi Plus.

TIDAL HiFi is our entry level HiFi subscription and allows you to listen to music in lossless high fidelity audio.

TIDAL HiFi Plus is the only service that allows you to listen to music in lossless high fidelity audio, Authenticated Master Quality audio, and immersive audio formats all in one place. A HiFi Plus membership guarantees that you will be first to get the latest updates in sound technology before other members

HiFi_Plus_Table_Mobile.jpg


A TIDAL HiFi membership supports the following sound options:
  • HiFi - Lossless quality audio (1411kbps or 16bit / 44.1kHz).
  • High - Best compromise between data usage and sound quality (320kbps AAC).
  • Normal - Reduced data usage for slower connections.
A TIDAL HiFi Plus membership supports additional, innovative sound formats:
  • Master - Original master recordings - authenticated by the record label or artist themselves. Unrivaled quality, clarity and depth delivering all file sizes (up to 24 bit / 352kHz), using no more bandwidth than a CD quality (16 bit / 44.1kHZ) file (up to 9216 Kbps or 24 bit / 192 kHz).
  • Immersive Audio - Allows sounds to be precisely and spatially placed. We are the only service to support both 360 Reality Audio and Dolby Atmos on mobile devices.
  • HiFi - Lossless quality audio (1411kbps or 16bit / 44.1kHz).
  • High - Best compromise between data usage and sound quality (320kbps AAC).
  • Normal - Reduced data usage for slower connections.

What is High Fidelity (HiFi) Sound?
TIDAL HiFi relies on FLAC (16bit / 44.1kHz), a more robust and crisp streaming format. The majority of streaming services simply offer Standard Definition audio through the use of MP3s or other compressed formats - where aspects of the original recording are removed to compress the file, compromising on quality. With a TIDAL HiFi subscription, you have the ability to stream over 70+ million losslessly compressed tracks. TIDAL Lossless content is 4.4x the bitrate of the highest Standard Definition streams offered by other services, allowing you to hear the music in its purest form.

What is Master Quality Authenticated (MQA) technology?
TIDAL has partnered with MQA to deliver audio in an authenticated and unbroken version (typically 96 kHz / 24 bit) with the highest possible resolution—as flawless as it sounded in the mastering suite and precisely as the artist intended. MQA offers our members a more natural, believable, involving and immersive listening experience. For every song or album, our label partners and artists ensure that only the highest quality definitive master is converted to MQA.
TIDAL is one of the only services to render 24-bit master files streamable on portable devices as it uses a state-of-the-art MQA compression process.
Here you can learn more about Master Quality audio at TIDAL, and here about how the MQA technology works.

Which iOS devices support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus can be used on iPhones and iPads with iOS13 or above.

Which Android devices support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus can be used on Android Version 6 or later. Please note that the Blackberry Android is not supported. You can also enjoy TIDAL on your Kindle Fire with Android version 4.4.4 or higher.

Which Mac devices support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus is supported on Mac OS X v10.10 or later with a processor/CPU: Intel® Core™ Duo or faster and a RAM of 512MB (1GB recommended)

Which Windows devices support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus is supported on Windows 7 or later with a processor/CPU: 2.33GHz Intel® Pentium® 4, AMD Athlon® 64 2800+, or faster, and a RAM of 512MB (1GB recommended)

What Web Browsers support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
For use on Macs (OS X) or Windows-based computers:
Google Chrome
Firefox
Opera
Vivaldi
Brave
Please ensure you are updated to the latest version of the selected browser as older versions may not be supported.
Which home audio devices and software support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus offers integration with many of the most popular home audio devices. These include:
Desktop App connected via USB or other digital outputs(*)
Sonos
Google Cast or Chromecast
BluOS by Bluesound*
Roon*
Naim
Heos by Denon

A complete list of devices and apps found here.
(*)Indicates support for MQA.

Which Smart TVs and Streamers support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
Roku
Chromecast
AppleTV
Fire TV
Android TV

How can I best enjoy TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus in the car?
TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus can be enjoyed via a standard 3.5mm / ¼-inch “aux cord”, Bluetooth, or via digital mirroring technologies like Apple Carplay, Android Auto, Ford Applink, and Samsung Carconnect. Some of these also support TIDAL Masters, depending on the vehicle model.
TIDAL is also available directly in the infotainment systems of:
Mercedes-Benz (in newer models with MBUX)*
Volkswagen (starting with the 2020 Passat)*

*Only available in select regions.

How much space will TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus audio files take up when downloaded to my device?
The following things determine the size of a downloaded song: the file’s bit depth, sampling frequency, and compression codec used. Note that higher-quality lossless files are larger. Below are examples of file sizes for a 3½ minute song:

Normal - 2.5MB
High - 8.4MB
HiFi (lossless, 44.1 kHz sample rate) - 20 MB
MQA (lossless, max 352 kHz sample rate) - 26.25 MB

Note: Sizes of FLAC files can vary greatly depending on music dynamics, conversion tool used, what format the file was converted from and the level of compression used. The information here is general and currently being revised for more accuracy.

What data speed does my internet connection need to be to listen to TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
For the best streaming experience on HiFi and MQA, we recommend a steady Internet connection of 1.5 to 2 Mbps or more. Note that HiFi audio usually consumes up to 5.5 MB of data per minute, and MQA up to 7.5MB of data per minute (varying based on the exact sample rates).
Note: Sizes of FLAC files can vary greatly depending on music dynamics, conversion tool used, what format the file was converted from and the level of compression used. The information here is general and currently being revised for more accuracy.

How do I know the audio quality of content I am listening to?
To view or make changes to the audio quality on your desktop, go to Settings on the left-hand slider. Select Streaming to manage your sound quality, either Normal, High, or HiFi/Master and confirm your output device.
While a song is selected, you can find the type of audio quality to the right of the shuffle button.
To view or make changes to the audio quality in-app, go to My Collection, and select Settings in the top right corner. Select Streaming to manage your sound quality for both WiFi and Cellular data.
While a song is selected, you can see the audio quality it is streaming in under the play/pause button.

Why would I need an external Digital Analog Converter (DAC)?
A DAC is not needed to enjoy HiFi or MQA; however, in order to enjoy MQA at its fullest potential, MQA has select partners that have built DACs to specifically playback MQA in the best and most accurate way possible. A selection of these DACs can be found here.

Optimizing HiFi and HiFi Plus – TIDAL
TIDAL What is TIDAL? What is HiFi?
Optimizing HiFi and HiFi Plus
While you will hear the difference with TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus on most devices, you will want to optimize your setup to achieve bit-perfect playback and enjoy TIDAL HiFi or HiFi Plus to its fullest extent.

Below are the three steps to take to get the most out of your HiFi or HiFi Plus subscription.

1. Change Your Settings To The Highest Sound Quality

First, you should adjust your settings to ensure you are streaming at the highest quality possible; HiFi is the highest sound quality setting on TIDAL HiFi and Master Quality audio is the highest sound quality available on TIDAL HiFi Plus.

You can click through the articles below to learn more about adjusting the Sound Quality settings on your TIDAL app.

Mobile
Desktop

Note that streaming higher quality audio on WiFi is preferable as it may lead to less disruptions in streaming.

2. Optimize Your DAC (Digital-to-Analog Converter)

Second, use a DAC and optimize for that DAC.

A little background: in order to enjoy music as conveniently as we do today, we convert recordings from analog to digital. However, since sound waves are produced in analog form, the signal must first be converted back to analog before a speaker can play back music. This is done through a DAC or Digital-to-Analog Converter. The DAC changes a digital file back into an analog electrical signal with a constantly changing voltage that our speakers and our ears are able to process as sound.

Any device capable of audio playback contains a DAC; but, as with most technology, the quality of the DAC makes a difference in sound quality. High quality DACs are available in certain headphones, mobile devices, or as standalone units.

Once you have selected a DAC you should read through the selected product instructions to connect to your playback device. Then, once connected to the TIDAL client, you will want to adjust your streaming settings as follows:

Click the icon in the top left corner
Select ‘Settings’ then ‘Streaming’
Change the ‘Sound Output’ to your DAC
Click (More Settings)
Toggle additional settings as they pertain to your setup.

3. Optimize Your Playback Device

Third, whether playing through a speaker or headphones, good gear makes a difference.

Not everyone prefers the same type of sound/playback, but high-quality hardware will best deliver the full experience of HiFi or HiFi Plus. TIDAL works with all speakers and headphones, and we have a wealth of great sound partners to help deliver the best listening experience.

You can browse our partners here: Supported Devices

You can also read about TIDAL Connect, our industry-leading technology to deliver in-app casting of high-quality music, here: TIDAL Connect
******
Glossary

Exclusive Mode only has an effect for HiFi and Master playback. This setting grants TIDAL exclusive use of the audio device eliminating interference. With this enabled, TIDAL has exclusive use of your DAC and will automatically change the frequency based on the song selection.
Force Volume allows TIDAL to bypass its settings allowing the user to control the volume from their DAC or connected stereo device.
Passthrough MQA disables software decoding of MQA. When this is selected TIDAL will leave the unfolding up to your connected DAC. This should only be selected if you have an MQA compatible DAC.
 

tmtomh

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I think it's clear that Tidal is not saying goodbye to MQA (alas!). They're just separating their lossless tier into (1) redbook and (2) everything higher-res in some way than redbook, specifically MQA and "more than stereo" stuff like Atmos.

It will be interesting to see how the subscriptions shake out across the two new tiers. My only concern is if Tidal is automatically transitioning current hi-fi subscribers to HiFi plus, then that will skew the results.

As for Apple and Spotify hi-fi, I am glad to hear about those - if both of them do not use MQA (which seems to be the case, yes?), that will be very good news IMHO.
 

dmac6419

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Actually, this was discussed on Tidal related Reddit / Facebook / ? groups 4+ days ago:

And, we Annual Subscribers get a "free" upgrade so we can continue listening to what we've already paid for ;)

Anyon else seen this yet? Tidal Hifi Plus : TIdaL (reddit.com)
View attachment 127504

MQA separated in Tidal HiFi Plus subscription : TIdaL (reddit.com)

The Facebook groups for Tidal are membership only to keep the trolls out :cool:

Here is Tidal AU's new Hifi Plus and Hifi Tier description, and the New Hifi and Hifi Plus optimization through a Support thread:

What Audio Quality Do TIDAL HiFi Plans Offer? – TIDAL
What Audio Quality Do TIDAL HiFi Plans Offer?

TIDAL HiFi memberships are the best way to experience music in the highest sound quality available. We have two TIDAL HiFi subscription options - HiFi and HiFi Plus.

TIDAL HiFi is our entry level HiFi subscription and allows you to listen to music in lossless high fidelity audio.

TIDAL HiFi Plus is the only service that allows you to listen to music in lossless high fidelity audio, Authenticated Master Quality audio, and immersive audio formats all in one place. A HiFi Plus membership guarantees that you will be first to get the latest updates in sound technology before other members

HiFi_Plus_Table_Mobile.jpg


A TIDAL HiFi membership supports the following sound options:
  • HiFi - Lossless quality audio (1411kbps or 16bit / 44.1kHz).
  • High - Best compromise between data usage and sound quality (320kbps AAC).
  • Normal - Reduced data usage for slower connections.
A TIDAL HiFi Plus membership supports additional, innovative sound formats:
  • Master - Original master recordings - authenticated by the record label or artist themselves. Unrivaled quality, clarity and depth delivering all file sizes (up to 24 bit / 352kHz), using no more bandwidth than a CD quality (16 bit / 44.1kHZ) file (up to 9216 Kbps or 24 bit / 192 kHz).
  • Immersive Audio - Allows sounds to be precisely and spatially placed. We are the only service to support both 360 Reality Audio and Dolby Atmos on mobile devices.
  • HiFi - Lossless quality audio (1411kbps or 16bit / 44.1kHz).
  • High - Best compromise between data usage and sound quality (320kbps AAC).
  • Normal - Reduced data usage for slower connections.

What is High Fidelity (HiFi) Sound?
TIDAL HiFi relies on FLAC (16bit / 44.1kHz), a more robust and crisp streaming format. The majority of streaming services simply offer Standard Definition audio through the use of MP3s or other compressed formats - where aspects of the original recording are removed to compress the file, compromising on quality. With a TIDAL HiFi subscription, you have the ability to stream over 70+ million losslessly compressed tracks. TIDAL Lossless content is 4.4x the bitrate of the highest Standard Definition streams offered by other services, allowing you to hear the music in its purest form.

What is Master Quality Authenticated (MQA) technology?
TIDAL has partnered with MQA to deliver audio in an authenticated and unbroken version (typically 96 kHz / 24 bit) with the highest possible resolution—as flawless as it sounded in the mastering suite and precisely as the artist intended. MQA offers our members a more natural, believable, involving and immersive listening experience. For every song or album, our label partners and artists ensure that only the highest quality definitive master is converted to MQA.
TIDAL is one of the only services to render 24-bit master files streamable on portable devices as it uses a state-of-the-art MQA compression process.
Here you can learn more about Master Quality audio at TIDAL, and here about how the MQA technology works.

Which iOS devices support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus can be used on iPhones and iPads with iOS13 or above.

Which Android devices support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus can be used on Android Version 6 or later. Please note that the Blackberry Android is not supported. You can also enjoy TIDAL on your Kindle Fire with Android version 4.4.4 or higher.

Which Mac devices support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus is supported on Mac OS X v10.10 or later with a processor/CPU: Intel® Core™ Duo or faster and a RAM of 512MB (1GB recommended)

Which Windows devices support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus is supported on Windows 7 or later with a processor/CPU: 2.33GHz Intel® Pentium® 4, AMD Athlon® 64 2800+, or faster, and a RAM of 512MB (1GB recommended)

What Web Browsers support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
For use on Macs (OS X) or Windows-based computers:
Google Chrome
Firefox
Opera
Vivaldi
Brave
Please ensure you are updated to the latest version of the selected browser as older versions may not be supported.
Which home audio devices and software support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus offers integration with many of the most popular home audio devices. These include:
Desktop App connected via USB or other digital outputs(*)
Sonos
Google Cast or Chromecast
BluOS by Bluesound*
Roon*
Naim
Heos by Denon

A complete list of devices and apps found here.
(*)Indicates support for MQA.

Which Smart TVs and Streamers support TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
Roku
Chromecast
AppleTV
Fire TV
Android TV

How can I best enjoy TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus in the car?
TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus can be enjoyed via a standard 3.5mm / ¼-inch “aux cord”, Bluetooth, or via digital mirroring technologies like Apple Carplay, Android Auto, Ford Applink, and Samsung Carconnect. Some of these also support TIDAL Masters, depending on the vehicle model.
TIDAL is also available directly in the infotainment systems of:
Mercedes-Benz (in newer models with MBUX)*
Volkswagen (starting with the 2020 Passat)*

*Only available in select regions.

How much space will TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus audio files take up when downloaded to my device?
The following things determine the size of a downloaded song: the file’s bit depth, sampling frequency, and compression codec used. Note that higher-quality lossless files are larger. Below are examples of file sizes for a 3½ minute song:

Normal - 2.5MB
High - 8.4MB
HiFi (lossless, 44.1 kHz sample rate) - 20 MB
MQA (lossless, max 352 kHz sample rate) - 26.25 MB

Note: Sizes of FLAC files can vary greatly depending on music dynamics, conversion tool used, what format the file was converted from and the level of compression used. The information here is general and currently being revised for more accuracy.

What data speed does my internet connection need to be to listen to TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus?
For the best streaming experience on HiFi and MQA, we recommend a steady Internet connection of 1.5 to 2 Mbps or more. Note that HiFi audio usually consumes up to 5.5 MB of data per minute, and MQA up to 7.5MB of data per minute (varying based on the exact sample rates).
Note: Sizes of FLAC files can vary greatly depending on music dynamics, conversion tool used, what format the file was converted from and the level of compression used. The information here is general and currently being revised for more accuracy.

How do I know the audio quality of content I am listening to?
To view or make changes to the audio quality on your desktop, go to Settings on the left-hand slider. Select Streaming to manage your sound quality, either Normal, High, or HiFi/Master and confirm your output device.
While a song is selected, you can find the type of audio quality to the right of the shuffle button.
To view or make changes to the audio quality in-app, go to My Collection, and select Settings in the top right corner. Select Streaming to manage your sound quality for both WiFi and Cellular data.
While a song is selected, you can see the audio quality it is streaming in under the play/pause button.

Why would I need an external Digital Analog Converter (DAC)?
A DAC is not needed to enjoy HiFi or MQA; however, in order to enjoy MQA at its fullest potential, MQA has select partners that have built DACs to specifically playback MQA in the best and most accurate way possible. A selection of these DACs can be found here.

Optimizing HiFi and HiFi Plus – TIDAL
TIDAL What is TIDAL? What is HiFi?
Optimizing HiFi and HiFi Plus
While you will hear the difference with TIDAL HiFi and HiFi Plus on most devices, you will want to optimize your setup to achieve bit-perfect playback and enjoy TIDAL HiFi or HiFi Plus to its fullest extent.

Below are the three steps to take to get the most out of your HiFi or HiFi Plus subscription.

1. Change Your Settings To The Highest Sound Quality

First, you should adjust your settings to ensure you are streaming at the highest quality possible; HiFi is the highest sound quality setting on TIDAL HiFi and Master Quality audio is the highest sound quality available on TIDAL HiFi Plus.

You can click through the articles below to learn more about adjusting the Sound Quality settings on your TIDAL app.

Mobile
Desktop

Note that streaming higher quality audio on WiFi is preferable as it may lead to less disruptions in streaming.

2. Optimize Your DAC (Digital-to-Analog Converter)

Second, use a DAC and optimize for that DAC.

A little background: in order to enjoy music as conveniently as we do today, we convert recordings from analog to digital. However, since sound waves are produced in analog form, the signal must first be converted back to analog before a speaker can play back music. This is done through a DAC or Digital-to-Analog Converter. The DAC changes a digital file back into an analog electrical signal with a constantly changing voltage that our speakers and our ears are able to process as sound.

Any device capable of audio playback contains a DAC; but, as with most technology, the quality of the DAC makes a difference in sound quality. High quality DACs are available in certain headphones, mobile devices, or as standalone units.

Once you have selected a DAC you should read through the selected product instructions to connect to your playback device. Then, once connected to the TIDAL client, you will want to adjust your streaming settings as follows:

Click the icon in the top left corner
Select ‘Settings’ then ‘Streaming’
Change the ‘Sound Output’ to your DAC
Click (More Settings)
Toggle additional settings as they pertain to your setup.

3. Optimize Your Playback Device

Third, whether playing through a speaker or headphones, good gear makes a difference.

Not everyone prefers the same type of sound/playback, but high-quality hardware will best deliver the full experience of HiFi or HiFi Plus. TIDAL works with all speakers and headphones, and we have a wealth of great sound partners to help deliver the best listening experience.

You can browse our partners here: Supported Devices

You can also read about TIDAL Connect, our industry-leading technology to deliver in-app casting of high-quality music, here: TIDAL Connect
******
Glossary

Exclusive Mode only has an effect for HiFi and Master playback. This setting grants TIDAL exclusive use of the audio device eliminating interference. With this enabled, TIDAL has exclusive use of your DAC and will automatically change the frequency based on the song selection.
Force Volume allows TIDAL to bypass its settings allowing the user to control the volume from their DAC or connected stereo device.
Passthrough MQA disables software decoding of MQA. When this is selected TIDAL will leave the unfolding up to your connected DAC. This should only be selected if you have an MQA compatible DAC.
I'm in the USA haven't gotten that message yet
 

Sir Sanders Zingmore

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This is what my TIDAL app says… edit actually forget it I was going to point out that the pricing seems very different to what the article stated but then I remembered that if you subscribe through the app, Apple adds a margin on top
 
Last edited:

DavidMcRoy

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I think it's clear that Tidal is not saying goodbye to MQA (alas!). They're just separating their lossless tier into (1) redbook and (2) everything higher-res in some way than redbook, specifically MQA and "more than stereo" stuff like Atmos.

Thank you! This was my takeaway in my earlier post. I personally would like to have access to Hi-Res and Dolby Atmos tracks without having to deal with MQA, but there’s no “tier” for that.
 
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AdamG247

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Title has been revised. I was on the road today. Sorry for the delay. I intend to do it earlier and got distracted.
 
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AdamG247

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hmscott

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I'm in the USA haven't gotten that message yet
Australia-only so far...check out the AUD prices:

"Note that the pricing below is for Australia ONLY. Please click here to see plan availability and pricing in your region.
  • Premium - $11.99 AUD a month with standard sound quality (320 Kbps)
  • HiFi - $17.99 AUD a month with lossless High Fidelity sound quality (1411 Kbps)
  • HiFi Plus - $23.99 AUD a month with lossless High Fidelity sound quality (1411 Kbps), Master Quality audio (up to 9216 Kbps), and immersive audio - 360 Reality Audio, Dolby Atmos Music
  • Family Premium - $17.99 AUD a month including up to 5 additional family members totaling 6 on the account. Standard sound quality (320 Kbps)
Discounted Plans
  • Student Premium - $5.99 AUD a month
  • Student HiFi - $8.99 AUD a month
  • Student HiFi Plus- $11.99 AUD a month"

Translating the prices to USD it looks like we might get the same price, or a small price drop. :)

"Premium" standard sound quality (320 Kbps) - $9.26 USD
"Hifi" with lossless High Fidelity sound quality - $13.89 USD
"Hifi Plus" with lossless High Fidelity sound quality (1411 Kbps), Master Quality audio (up to 9216 Kbps), and immersive audio - 360 Reality Audio, Dolby Atmos Music - $18.52 USD

Tidal has broken out a FLAC-only tier "HiFi" to compete with the other services with FLAC service - Amazon Music HD and the others adding FLAC soon.

Tidal hasn't gotten rid of MQA, Tidal have opened up a cheaper Tidal service "Hifi", to bring in more customers.
 
Last edited:

Soundstage

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So when Tidal sells lossless, is it lossless Redbook quality or lossless adulterated à la MQA but without the decoder?
 

luft262

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I get that Tidal MQA offers up to 24bit/192kHz MQA lossy, but who is gonna pay extra for that over 16bit/44.1kHz lossless? Especially, when you could get Hi-Res FLAC lossless for less from Qobuz or Amazon HD? How much are they saving in bandwidth going MQA over FLAC? I'd be curious to know how much more efficient MQA is over FLAC in terms of bandwidth.
 

TurbulentCalm

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From the article:
Edit: I'm confused. Does HiFi Plus tier still include MQA. I think so? But also hires PCM up to 9216 Kbps? The confusion fest does not make Tidal attractive to me.

I have this now in my Tidal plan (Australian). So I tested it.

It only allows CD quality 16Bits/44.1kHz audio. Note that don’t mean that the files aren’t MQA encoded with the MQA flags stripped forcing non-MQA 13Bit audio over the stream. Someone is going to have to check this.
 

TurbulentCalm

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buz

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Especially, when you could get Hi-Res FLAC lossless for less from Qobuz or Amazon HD? How much are they saving in bandwidth going MQA over FLAC? I'd be curious to know how much more efficient MQA is over FLAC in terms of bandwidth.

While Qobuz is better priced and offers good quality, the app is garbage (not to mention that the recommendation engine is utterly useless) and half the background information is in French.


Now I am looking towards Google, latest iteration of YT Music is finally usable AND it keeps my uploaded songs for the streaming holdouts (Rammstein *cough*)...
 

mSpot

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Translating the prices to USD it looks like we might get the same price, or a small price drop. :)
You're overthinking it. It's all very simple.

Premium (320 Kbps) will be unchanged ($9.99 USD)
The current HiFi will be renamed to HiFi Plus, otherwise unchanged ($19.99 USD)
The new HiFi will be $14.99 USD (25% less than HiFi Plus, as in Australia).

Edit: I'm confused. Does HiFi Plus tier still include MQA. I think so? But also hires PCM up to 9216 Kbps?
Look at Tidal's current description of the US plan (https://support.tidal.com/hc/en-us/articles/115003662825-Subscription-Types):
HiFi Plus will be the same as the current HiFi (includes MQA but no direct streaming of hires PCM). To get hires up to 9216 Kbps requires unfolding MQA with hardware or software decoder. It is a bit misleading in the plan description that it doesn't mention needing an external decoder.

Look at it another way. If Tidal were to start streaming 9216 Kbps PCM, existing MQA hardware decoders suddenly become useless.
 
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